Obama administration calls for Shalit release

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Obama administration called for captive Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit’s immediate release.

"Nearly five years have now passed since Hamas terrorists crossed into Israel and abducted Gilad Shalit," the White House said in a statement June 24 timed for a new international effort to secure the freedom of the Israeli soldier captured in 2006 in a cross-border raid by gunmen affiliated with Gaza-based Hamas terrorists. "During this time, Hamas has held him hostage without access by the International Committee of the Red Cross, in violation of the standards of basic decency and international humanitarian demands. 

"As the anniversary of his capture approaches, the United States condemns in the strongest possible terms his continued detention, and joins other governments and international organizations around the world in calling on Hamas to release him immediately."

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